Seattle University jumped on the board early, kept San Jose State off the scoreboard throughout the night, and then used a big inning to end the game early, defeating the Spartans 13-3 in an eight-inning run-rule Western Athletic Conference baseball contest Friday night at Municipal Stadium.
With one out in the second inning, Sean Narby (Auburn, Wash.) started the scoring with a solo home run to left field, his team-leading fifth homer of the season. Ryan Somers (Sammamish, Wash.) doubled down the right field line, advanced to third on a passed ball, and scored on a single to right field by Nick Latta (Tacoma, Wash.).
After a flyout, Bryndon Ecklund (Elma, Wash.) singled to put runners on the corners, and Chase Fields (Ontario, Ore.) followed with a bunt single that drove in Latta. Ecklund would come around to score on a single up the middle by Landon Cray (Chimacum, Wash.), and Nate Roberts (Silverdale, Wash.) would drive in Fields with a single to left-center field.
Brian Olson (Black Diamond, Wash.) and Narby led off the third inning with back-to-back walks, and Latta would send a single into center field to load the bases with one out. Cash McGuire’s (Kent, Wash.) flyout to left field was deep enough to advance all three runners, and then San Jose State’s defensive miscues would help the Redhawks, as Narby scored on a passed ball and Latta would follow him home on a Spartan throwing error.
San Jose State (13-28, 7-9 WAC) would score one run in the bottom of the third inning, but Seattle U starter Ted Hammond (Shoreline, Wash.) would keep the Spartans at bay through most of his outing, allowing just two hits, one walk, and one run through the first five innings. After giving up two hits, a walk, and two runs to lead off the sixth inning, Hammond was replaced by Kyle Doyle (Covington, Wash.), who pitched the next three innings, giving up just two hits.
The Redhawks put the game away in the top of the eighth inning, as Latta picked up a one-out single, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and reached third on a single by McGuire. Ecklund drove in Latta with a sacrifice fly to center field, and Fields would draw a two-out walk.
After a pitching change, Zach Aaker (Ravensdale, Wash.) walked to load the bases, Roberts would double down the left field line to score McGuire and Fields, and Olson would drive in Aaker and Roberts with an infield single. Doyle would cause the conference ten-run rule to be invoked by setting down the Spartans in order in the bottom of the eighth, striking out two batters as he earned his first save of the season.
“Our guys came out very aggressive, knowing that every series is a must-win to make the (WAC) tourney,” Seattle U head coach Donny Harrel said. “Nate and Nick showed senior leadership tonight, leading a great charge in this important victory.”
Latta went 3-for-4 with three runs scored, while Roberts was 2-for-5 with a run scored and three RBI. Fields, Somers, and Ecklund also picked up two hits apiece as the Redhawks finished with 15 hits while the Spartans were held to six hits by Hammond and Doyle.
Seattle University (16-24, 6-9 WAC) will face San Jose State once again Saturday, April 27, starting at 1 p.m. Dan Giuliani will broadcast the game on GoSeattleU.com, starting with the pregame show shortly before first pitch.